Sunday, April 29, 2007

More than a Memory

There was a marvelous article in the New York Times last week about the wonders of Wonder Bread, the premise being that surrounded as we are by organic, slow-food friendly options, we yearn for processed foods. Driven in part by nostalgia and also because there's true enjoyment in the flavor of the product, we eat what it seems we should shun.

Growing up in a house where dessert was usually fresh fruit, one would think that I'd find canned versions no fun, but I admit a lingering fondness for canned pears. I remember being in elementary school when I first encountered the pears in a plastic dish. They were sweet. They were slightly mealy and slimy so that it took a few stabs with my spoon before I could get in a bite, but I loved them. The spoon cut through the pear and the whole bite was sugary with a texture unlike anything else I'd encountered. And when the dish was empty, there was the best part, drinking the pear juice. I tried to explain to mum and dad that we had these great pears at school that were even better than the Bartlett pears we peeled at home. They laughed at my pedestrian taste, but from time to time, as a special treat, canned pears would show up at home. They still do.


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